Three Reasons Your Best Clients Might Not Be Referring You
Referral business from within your network is the best kind of business because your clients and advocates do all of the work for you and often send the ready-to-go business or job openings straight to your inbox. Tapping into that resource is a great use of your time, but before you do so, you might want to give some thought to why you may not be getting as much referral business as you could be. The answer is usually one of the following three reasons:
1. They think you are too busy. This is very common among busy service providers, speakers and top producing sales reps. Sometimes our own great press works against us. One of the subtle ways to let your network know that you are NOT too busy for referrals is by being available to chat occasionally or by picking up the phone and inquiring how business is going for them. Often times we give off a frenetic, over-busy vibe, so it’s no surprise that our network assumes we don’t need referrals.
2. They want to keep you to themselves. It happens. Sometimes your best clients and customers simply want to keep you a secret because they love the work you do for them—or they want to keep you from raising your prices due to increased demand. If you suspect this is the case and you are pretty sure #1 above or #3 below are not the issue, then there is nothing much to be done except enjoy the fact that your client loves you so much that they want to hog you all to themselves—or to be assured that your prices won’t go up if you get more business.
3. They don’t see you as a fit for others. This is a painful but very common reality. Clients who do business with you and have access to the contacts you need may be withholding because they think you are too quirky or inconsistent in your prices or business practices to refer out. (for more on this see my earlier blog on this subject) If you suspect this is the case, it is worthwhile to correct your behaviors, because if you are not a “sure thing” then you probably won’t get the best referrals, meaning that you will have to work harder at the bottom of the opportunity pool.
or provide someone with a resource that will save them time or money.